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they, when they go through the airport leaving here or coming to washington look anyone in uniform in the eye and say they voted against a bill to make sure there would not be defense cuts here. the other side of the aisle has no answer for that. their only hans today and as it's been ever since i've been here in congress is to say the solution to all problems is, what? raising taxes. they want to raise taxes for every $1 in spending cuts. we do not have a revenue problem in this country. we have a spending problem in this country. now there's an old saying that goes if there's a dime left on the table in washington, someone, primarily from the other side of the aisle, i would suggest, will find a dollar's worth of use for spending it. and i think that's the case here. if they raise the taxes three to one, they'll find $30 worth of spending to increase and the gentleman from california pointed out that was the example every single time in the budget committee, every single time we have suggested
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for spending cuts they were opposed and would always use the same spending cuts to further increases in spending elsewhere. as the gentleman from california makes the reference to spending a dollar every time for what was it, for breath mints i think it was. candidly, after listening to this debate and after listening to debate continually in budget committee over the years, i always leave there as i will leave here tonight with a sour taste in my mouth. if the other side of the aisle does not agree to begin to work with us in a bipartisan manner to make sure that this country is strong fiscally, to make sure that this country is strong in a defense posture as well. i encourage all my colleagues from both sides of the aisle to vote yea on this legislation. with that, i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new jersey yields back. all time for debate has expired. pursuant to haas resolution 778 the previous question is ordered on the bill the question is on engrossment and third reading of the bill. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. third reading.
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the clerk: a bill to amend the balanced budget and emergency deficit control act of 1985, to replace the sequester established by the budget control act of 2011. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from maryland seek recognition? mr. van hollen: madam speaker, i have a motion to recommit at the desk. the speaker pro tempore: is the gentleman opposed to the bill? mr. van hollen: i am opposed. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman qualifies. the clerk: mr. van hollen of maryland moves to recommit the bill, h.r. 6365, to the committee on the budget with instructions to report the same back to the house forthwith with the following amendment -- strike sections 3 and 4 and insert the following, section 3, balanced deficit reduction that protects middle class tax cuts and requires everyone to pay their fair share. a, conditional elimination of sequestration. sections 251-a-7 through a-11 of the emergency deficit control act shall have no force
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or effect upon enactment of deficit reduction legislation containing savings over 10 years that meet or exceed the outlaying changes that would have resulted from those changes. b, requirements of deficit reduction legislation. deficit reduction legislation enacted pursuant to subsection a shall, one, require upper income taxpayers by instituting a buffett rule. extending middle class tax cuts while having the tax extensions that benefit upper income beneficiaries to expire as scheduled under current law. and, three, include targeted spending cuts. the speaker pro tempore: does the gentleman from new jersey seek recognition? mr. garrett: i no longer do. i withdraw my point of order. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from maryland is recognized for five minutes in support of his motion. mr. van hollen: thank you, madam speaker. let's just flash back to a year ago when we were working on the budget control act, and it's i
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think worth reminding everybody what the speaker of the house, mr. boehner, said at that time. quote, i got 98% of what i wanted. i'm pretty happy, unquote. that's what the speaker of the house said about the budget control act. we now find ourselves here trying to find a way to prevent these across-the-board meat ax cuts from taking place in the defense budget and the nondefense budget. there's agreement that that would be a stupid way to dealing with our deficit. so there's no dispute there. the issue is, what do we do to replace the sequester to achieve deficit reduction but do it in a reasonable and credible way? that's where the rub is. and what democrats have said is we need to do it in the way that bipartisan groups have proposed that we do it through a combination of additional cuts in a targeted way, not in a meat ax across-the-board way
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but, yes, we also have to ask the very wealthiest americans to contribute more to reducing the deficit because the math is pretty simple. if you don't ask very wealthy people to contribute one more penny to reducing the deficit, then you have to hit everybody else much harder. you have to hit seniors on medicare harder. you have to reduce dramatically our investment in our kids' education. you have to cut investments in infrastructure, our roads and bridges. those are the consequences of not taking a balanced approach. and so we say when it comes to the sequester we should avoid all the terrible things that our colleagues have said and which we agree with. let's take a balanced approach to doing it. and you know what, the president submitted a plan to do just that. more than a year ago. it's not that he didn't have a plan. it's our republican colleagues don't like the plan. why? because he says we don't need
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to provide these big taxpayer giveaways to the big oil companies any more. we don't need to cut dramatically into things like medicaid and medicare when we should be asking seniors to pay a little bit more. let's ask them to pay what they were when president clinton was president. that's the last time we balanced our budget. so the question is how we do it. president submitted a proposal. as i said earlier, i took a proposal. yesterday the rules committee would have done this in a balanced approach. our colleagues say they want an open and democratic process. we haven't had a vote on that. instead, we will have a vote, even if it passes the house and senate and signed by the president, doesn't do anything to eliminate the sequester. doesn't do a thing. it just says that the president has to come up with a plan, but they tell him it cannot include any revenue. it has to be across the board in cuts. now let's take a minute about
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taxes. the president asked the congress to immediately enact tax relief to 98% of the american people. let's do it now before they expire at the end of this year. our republican colleagues say, no, no. nobody gets tax relief unless very wealthy people get a bonus tax break because everybody on the president's proposal gets tax relief on the first $250,000 of their income. our republican colleagues said, no, unless people like mitt romney get an extra tax break, nobody gets tax relief. and you know what, the president's proposal provides tax relief to 97% of all businesses. our republicans said, no, unless you give people like bane capital tax relief, nobody can get it. let's talk about jobs. our republican colleagues said if you allow these budget cuts take place it will have a devastating impact on jobs in this country.
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you know what, a year ago this month the president submitted a proposal to this congress, a jobs initiative. it called for investing more in our infrastructure, in our roads, in our bridges to help put more americans back to work. we have 14% unemployment in the construction industry. so here our republicans are saying, well, we can't allow any of these cuts to take place because people who are building tanks will lose their jobs and we agree. strength that money on defense -- spending that money on defense has consequences. but how is it that spending money on roads and bridges and infrastructure doesn't also put people back to work? that's what the president proposed a year ago. not a single vote on the president's jobs bill. 37 votes to repeal obamacare but not one vote on the jobs bill. so madam speaker, whether it's
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acting on the president's proposal to extend tax relief on 98% of the people or taking a balanced approach to replacing the sequester, let's do what bipartisan groups are recommended and take that balanced away, to build our economy and reduce our deficit. thank you, madam speaker. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from new jersey seek recognition? mr. garrett: in opposition to the motion. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. garrett: thank you, madam speaker. so the seminole question i think those who are watching the deliberations here on the floor tonight are asking themselves, are you better off today than you were four years ago? and when you look at the economy, you have to answer that question with a resounding no. when poverty continues to be up year after year after year at the highest levels in this country since we've seen back in 2005 and we've seen people on food stamps. 47 million of our friends and neighbors find themselves in
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that situation. one out of six americans will be on medicaid. are you better off today than you were in the past? absolutely not. and that's why it's astonishing as i stand here to listen to the other side of the aisle and the proposals that they presented so far and that they have over the years. you know, for the last hour of the debate the gentleman from maryland has been saying two basic things but one primary thing is that he went to rules last night, that he had a plan, he pulled out his plan and he said, this is what the solution is. this is how we solve the problem. but gosh, you know, the problem was that that mean old rules committee wouldn't allow him to have it come down to the floor tonight. well, my friend and colleague from south carolina made the recommendation to him. take that proposal. if that is truly the answer in your heart is the right answer, then it's truly the way to go and lay it out. if you really do believe that the solution to the problems is by raising taxes to the tune of
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$85 billion and cutting spending to the net reduction of only $5 billion, if you truly do believe -- as he said for the last hour -- that the way to resolve the issue of sequester is by raising taxes like $3 for every $1 in cuts, if he truly believes for the last hour that is the solution to the problem, then he could have presented an alternative in this format. but he did not. mr. van hollen: if the gentleman will yield? that's just not true. we were asked the parliamentarian. they said we couldn't bring it in that format. mr. garrett: reclaiming my time. reclaiming my time. what we have here before us is a lack of direction, a lack of leadership that the americans are looking for. mr. van hollen: madam speaker. mr. garrett: the american public is looking -- the american public -- the speaker pro tempore: does the gentleman seek recognition? mr. van hollen: i would ask unanimous consent to bring up
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the substitute amendment so we could vote on it. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new jersey. mr. garrett: the american public is looking for leadership from washington and they are not seeing it from the president who has failed to present a budget that would get any single votes in either the house and senate. 97-0, 414-0. they are looking to the senate to demonstrate some degree of vision, some degree of leadership by taking any of the bills that we sent over to them, whether it's the budget or the sequester legislation and showing that they can pass that legislation. they are looking for some degree of vision from the other side of the aisle in the house as well on these matters to make sure we can stand up fiscally and a long defense and they are seeing a lack of vision from the other side of the house as well. we know what writings tell us. a nation without vision leads to a people that will perish. madam speaker, i can tell you this. that the last two years this republican controlled congress has shown vision with our strong budget, with our sequester bill and now with
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this bill as well to present the option to the other side, to the senate and to the president to make sure that we can defend this nation strong militarily and fiscally as well. i urge my colleagues to vote no on this motion to recommit and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. without objection, the previous question is ordered on the motion to recommit and the question is on the motion. all those in favor say aye. those opposed will say no. in the opinion of the chair, the noes have it. mr. van hollen: madam speaker, i ask for the yeas and nays. the speaker pro tempore: the motion is not agreed to and the yeas and nays are requested. those favoring a vote by the yeas and nays will rise. a sufficient number having arisen, the yeas and nays are ordered. members will record their votes by electronic device. pursuant to clause 9 of rule 20, the chair will reduce to five minutes the minimum time for any electronic vote on the question of passage. this will be a 15-minute vote. 15-minute vote. [captioning made possible by the national captioning
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institute, inc., in cooperation with the united states house of representatives. any use of the closed-captioned coverage of the house proceedings for political or commercial purposes is expressly prohibited by the u.s. house of representatives.]
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the speaker pro tempore: on this vote, the yeas are 170 and the nays are mented mouse is -- the motion is not adopted. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. the ayes have it. the gentleman from maryland. mr. van hollen: i ask for a recorded vote. the speaker pro tempore: the yeas and nays are requested. those in support of the request for a recorded vote will rise and be counted. a sufficient number having arisen, a recorded vote is ordered. this will be a five-minute vote. a five-minute vote. [captioning made possible by the national captioning institute, inc., in cooperation with the united states house of representatives. any use of the closed-captioned coverage of the house proceedings for political or
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commercial purposes is expressly prohibited by the u.s. house of representatives.]
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the speaker pro tempore: on this vote, the yeas are 223 and the nays are 196. the bill is passed. without objection, the motion to reconsider is laid on the table. pursuant to clause 1-c of rule 19, further consideration on house joint resolution 117 will now resume and the clerk will report the title. the clerk: house joint resolution 117, making continuing appropriations for fiscal year 2013 and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from arizona seek recognition? >> i have a motion to recommit at the desk.
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the speaker pro tempore: the house will be in order. the speaker pro tempore: the house will come to order. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from arizona opposed to the joint resolution? mr. barber: i have a motion to recommit at the desk and opposed to this bill in its current form. the speaker pro tempore: mr. barber of arizona moves to recommit house joint relution
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117 with instructions to report the same back to the house forth with, with the following amendment, at the end of the joint resolution before the short title, insert the following, section 156-a, full year funding for military personnel account notwithstanding section 106, appropriations and funds made available and authorities granted pursuant to this joint resolution -- the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will suspend. the gentleman is correct. the house is not in order. the house will be in order. the clerk will read. the clerk: including section 101-c, funds shall remain available until september 30, 2013, one, military personnel, army. two, military personnel, navy. -- mr. rogers: i ask unanimous consent that the reading be
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dispensed with. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. so ordered. pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from from arizona is recognized for five minutes in support of his motion. but before he begins, the house will come to order. the house will be in order. the gentleman from arizona. mr. barber: thank you, madam speaker. i'm offering this amendment to improve this legislation and truly show this chamber's support for our veterans and men and women in uniform. by preventing their pay and services from being impacted by a potential government shutdown next year. the underlying bill we're voting on today lacks key provisions that are needed to protect our veterans and active duty military. my amendment will add these
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provisions. my amendment will ensure that our patriotic men and women are not victims of partisan gridlock. my amendment ensures that basic military pay will not be interrupted in a potential shutdown. my amendment guarantees that our armed forces will be paid for the entire year, not just the six-month duration authorized by this continuing resolution. unfortunately, congress has failed to do its job, and we cannot allow a government shutdown to impact the basic pay of our men and women in uniform. this is a guarantee and assurance that they have the right to expect we will uphold no matter what. my amendment also addresses the fact that three critical veterans admission authorizations are set to expire at the end of the year. the first is for contract medical disability authority. without this extension which my amendment provides, the v.a. would not be able to pay for
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contract medical exams from discretionary funds. this could significantly delay from veterans receiving benefits. the second authorization which my amendment extends would give the v.a. the authority to treat veterans that are homeless and without essential services. and third v.a. authorization set to expire provide treatment to veterans with a serious mental illness. without this extension, the v.a. would no longer be provide for therapeutic transitional housing assistance to veterans who are homeless or have a serious mental illness. our veterans step forward when we ask them to serve. in return it is their undeniable responsibility to help them find employment and to care for them
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when they are not. tonight, there are 70,000 homeless veterans who will sleep on the streets of our country. this is a situation that is absolutely deploreable and must act to provide them with the assistance they deserve. none of what i propose isn't a partisan issue but keeping our promise to those who have defended our freedoms. there are two military installations in my district. and the 162nd fighter wing across the district line and i'm offering this district for the men and women stationed there and across this nation and across the world. during our recent work period, i went to the airport in tucson to honor the men and women of our national guard as they left for deployment. i told them and their families
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on behalf of all of us how grateful we are for their service and today, i ask you to join with me inputting action behind those words. this is not a partisan issue. we can and must find common ground in this chamber on this very issue. this morning, my colleague, congressman platts and i, introduced the veterans health care access act and make it easier for veterans to get access to health care. what issue is more important than this than supporting our veterans at a time when we need to get services to our veterans who are returning home from iraq and afghanistan, we cannot be creating uncertainty and allowing a lapse of service and pay. one is diagnosed with
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post-traumatic stress disorder and will be medley discharged, he deserves to know we will stand up for him and others like him. let me say again, the passage of this amendment will not prevent the passage of the underlying bill and i urge my republican and democratic colleagues to vote yes on this final amendment and support our military and support our veterans. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentleman from kentucky seek recognition? mr. rogers: in opposition. the speaker pro tempore: from indiana state his parliamentary inquiry. mr. burton: as i understand it, there is foreign-aid money in this bill and i want to know if any of it is going to libya or egypt. ambassador has been killed and
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the muslim brotherhood runs egypt and we are going to give them money? i would like to have an answer. the speaker pro tempore: the chair cannot respond to that inquiry. the chair cannot respond to that inquiry and the gentleman from kentucky is recognized. mr. rogers: i rise in strong opposition to the motion to recommit. this procedural motion is nothing more than a tactic designed to score political points for the cameras. if we work fervently, in good faith to put together a c.r. that meets the nation's critical needs for the next six months, we did take care of our veterans in this bill. we did take care of our stroops -- troops. with the funding, $2.1 billion more than last year.
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the c.r. provides necessary funds for our troops' pay raise. the only problem, madam speaker, in order for the checks to go out, the senate has to pass an authorization bill, which they have been sitting on for months. it's time for the senate to act on behalf of our troops and our veterans. now, we've got to pass this c.r. to keep the government open and keep the doors from closing on their government. and yet, the democrats want to put a road block to passing this one piece of legislation that keeps the government running. the last time i checked, madam speaker, if you close down the government, the nation's most deserving, our troops and veterans, will not get a single dollar of the benefits they deserve. so this bill is necessary. and with the november elections on the horizon, we should not be
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surprised that the other side wants to put politics ahead of doing our work, as usual. the american people expect us to stop the partisan bickering and get our work done. time for idle talk is over. enough is enough. we have bipartisan agreement on this bill. the house, the senate, both parties and the white house have signed off on this bill. the motion is not needed, it's not helpful, and the money is in the bill. stop the political posturing and make our citizens proud. vote no. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the question is -- the previous question is ordered on the motion to recommit. the question is on the motion to recommit. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the
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noes have it. the gentleman from arizona. mr. barber: i ask for a recorded vote. the speaker pro tempore: a recorded vote is requested. those favoring a recorded vote will rise, a sufficient number having arisen, a recorded vote is ordered. members will record their votes by electronic device. pursuant to clause 8 and clause 9 of rule 20, this 15-minute vote on the motion to recommit, house joint resolution 117, will be followed bypassing house resolution joint 117, if ordered and suspending the s. 4235. again, this is a 15-minute vote. [captioning made possible by the national captioning institute, inc., in cooperation with the united states house of representatives. any use of the closed-captioned coverage of the house proceedings for political or commercial purposes is expressly prohibited by the u.s. house of representatives.]
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the speaker pro tempore: the yeas are 189 and the nays are 232. the motion is not adopted. the question is on passage of the joint resolution. thraffer. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the yeas have it. for what purpose does the gentleman from washington rise? mr. dicks: i request a recorded vote. the speaker pro tempore: those in favor of a recorded vote will rise. a sufficient number having arisen, a recorded vote is ordered. members will record their votes by electronic device. this is a five-minute vote. five-minute vote. [captioning made possible by the national captioning institute, inc., in cooperation with the united states house of representatives. hupes house of representatives -- [captioning made possible by the national captioning institute,
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inc., in cooperation with the united states house of representatives. any use of the closed-captioned coverage of the house proceedings for political or commercial purposes is expressly prohibited by the u.s. house of representatives.]
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the speaker pro tempore: the yeas are 329 and the nays are 91. the joint resolution is passed. the speaker pro tempore: the joint resolution is passed. without objection, the motion to reconsider is laid on the table. the unfinished business is the vote on the motion of the the gentleman from texas, mr. smith, to suspend the rules and pass s. 3245 on which the yeas and nays are ordered. the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: senate 3245, an act
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to extend the authorization of the regional center program, the e-verify program and the waiver program. the speaker pro tempore: the question is will the house suspend the rules and pass the bill. members will record their votes by electronic device. this is a five-minute vote. a five-minute vote. [captioning made possible by the national captioning institute, inc., in cooperation with the united states house of representatives. any use of the closed-captioned coverage of the house proceedings for political or commercial purposes is expressly prohibited by the u.s. house of representatives.]
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the speaker pro tempore: on this bill, the yeas are 412, the nays are three. 2/3 being in the affirmative, the bill is passed and without objection the motion to reconsider is laid on the table. the chair lays before the house this enrolled bill. the clerk: h.r. 6336, an act to
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direct the joint committee on a library to accept a statue depicting frederick douglass from the district of columbia and provide for a permanent display of the statue in emancipation hall in the united states capitol. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from texas rise? >> mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent that the committee on government oversight and reform be discharged from further consideration of house resolution 775 and ask for its immediate consideration in the house. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the resolution. the clerk: house resolution 775. resolution condemning the shooting that dilled six innocent people at the sikh temple of wisconsin in oak creek, wisconsin, on august 5, 2012. the speaker pro tempore: is there objection to consideration of the resolution? hearing none, without objection the resolution is agreed to. the motion to reconsider is laid on the table.
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at this time the chair will entertain requests for one-minute speeches. for what purpose does the gentleman from california rise? >> i ask unanimous consent to address the house and revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for one minute. >> mr. speaker, i would like to speak in favor of the resolution i co-authored with risk delegation here in solidarity with the sikh community in oak keek and the sikh community across the united states. in a strange coincidence, i had a previously scheduled meeting in california at a sikh temple on the very day when that murderous attack in oak creek
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occurred. mr. royce: obviously our discussion shifted to the subject of that premedicated attack. i was able to hear about the plight of being targeted because of one's religion. the flight of -- plight of being targeted for one's appearance. we are in a constant struggle against bad ideas, despicable ideas. passing this resolution will not ease the pain of those affected by this tragedy but it does show to the world that people from across the united states can unite and denounce bigotted violence. our great country is rooted in religious tolerance. the constitution makes free tom of religion first and foremost. there is no place in this country for religious motivated terrorism and this resolution that we passed reaffirms that and i end by thanking mr. ryan and the wisconsin delegation for their efforts on this resolution but also i thank the leadership of both parties here today for working with us to
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make sure that this resolution came to the floor. thank you, mr. speaker. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. for what purpose does the gentleman from indiana rise? >> i ask unanimous consent to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for one minute. mr. burton: i'm disappointed today, we passed a c.r. for six months and it contained language in there that was supposedly designed to keep libya and egypt from getting funds. my colleagues overwhelmingly voted for it. i do not criticize them for that but i do feel very strongly in my heart that we made a mistake by not, in the rules committee, passing an amendment which would make sure that the money in that bill for foreign assistance did not go to libya or egypt. i read the document they put out and it does not prohibit the money from getting to libya and egypt. the muslim brotherhood runs
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egypt. they hate the united states. and the president has said he want to model his country after iran. in libya, they killed our ambassador and scaled the walls they burned our flag they did it in egypt and held up the al qaeda flag. and we're going to give them money. it makes no sense. and if the american people were paying attention to this right now, they would raise hell. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. for what purpose does the gentleman from florida rise? >> mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent to address the house for one minute and revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for one minute. >> thank you, mr. speaker, this monday a prominent cuban dissident launched a hunger strike to draw attention to the unwavering attempt to persecute pro-democracy supporters.
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she suffers from diabetes and her water-only fast could kill her within days. it is intolerable that this is the norm okwu ban society, jail, beating and detaining peaceful protesters who are demanding their basic human rights is not the norm. it is unacceptable. the castro brothers will continue their violent and abusive ways and stop at nothing to remain in power. mr. rivera: how bad do things need to get before the international community recognize the plight of the cuban people. these brave men and women continue to risk their lives every day and we must call attention to their struggle. thank you, mr. speaker. the speaker pro tempore: are there further requests for one-minute speechs? under the speaker's announced policy of january 5, 2011, the gentleman from california, mr. dreier is recognized for of minutes as designee of the majority leader. the gentleman is recognized for 60 minutes. mr. dreier: thank you very
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much, mr. speaker. i ask unanimous consent to revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. dreier: i rise today to talk about an issue that democrats and republicans and virtually every american is talking about. what is that issue? how do we increase global economic growth and here in this country how do we create more good american jobs. it's obviously a key part of the presidential campaign. we have democrats and republicans, daily, stand in the well of the house of representatives and offer proposals, talk about their ideas as to how we can create good jobs. we have the sad report of 380,000 people who fell off the rolls even looking for jobs. we have literally millions of our fellow americans looking for jobs and we have many
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businesses that are struggling. one of the great challenges that president obama put forward was the goal of doubling our exports. we all know that he very much wanted to do that we as members of congress came together after a decade and we finally were able to successfully pass market opening opportunities for u.s. workers to sell their goods and provide our services in panama, colombia and south korea. it took us a long time to get there. i know that it's easy to point the finger of blame but the fact is, we have been ready far long time this institution was ready for a long time. democrats and republicans alike. and we were finally able to get the legislation up here from down on pennsylvania avenue and we were able to make it happen with strong bipartisan votes on all three of those agreements. mr. speaker, with recognition
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that opening up markets around the world for u.s. goods and services is a gee way to create jobs here, again, as we debated the panama, colombia and korea trade agreements, there were members on both sides of the aisle who stood up and argued on behalf of those agreements, we now have before us what i believe is a no-brainer but tragically it's created some politicaltonser nation over a lot of confusion. we know that the idea of seeing countries join the w.t.o., the world trade organization, creates anary yow whereby they have to comply with a rules-based trading system. and we know that once they aeded the w.t.o., there are constraints imposed on them along with the benefits they get for their membership in the w.t.o. there was a lot of negotiation
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and talk about russia's entry into the world trade organization. the idea of seeing russia forced to comply with a system that would prevent them from engaging in discriminatory practices, from engaging in the kinds of acts that prevent products and services from getting into their country, the structure of having to comply with a rule he was based system, is something that membership in the w.t.o. forces and creates. and again, there were a lot of gos. the last was dealing with a border dispute with georgia that was resolved and that was resolved several months ago and that put into place a structure that allowed on august 22, last month, for russia to enter the world trade organization. russia is part of the w.t.o. they are now having been for
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over three weeks a member of the world trade organization. that means, as i said, tremendous benefits, that russia gets. they have 140 million consumers. there are going to be opportunities for countries around the world to export into russia. we last year exported $11 billion, $11 billion, of goods and service into the w.t.o. but guess what, mr. speaker? we're not at the table anymore. we've lost out on our chance to be able to sell our goods and services into russia. that market of 140 million consumers. now, why is it we've lost out? well, we haven't been able to have a vote here in the congress on russia's accession to the w.t.o. why hasn't that happened? i hate to be political even
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though this is the time of year people are especially political but we need to get this set up here to the congress so we can put together what i know will be broad bipartisan support to make this happen. when it comes up, i know we will see tremendous support on the republican side of the aisle and i say that because i'm particularly proud of the 73 newly elected republican members of congress, newly elected republican members of congress, of the 87, 73 sent a letter to president obama saying they believed it very important for us to open up that market so that if we all have this desire of creating more good jobs in the united states, let's open up that maet to 140 million consumers. well, unfortunately, we're still waiting for that. and i know, i know that it's not just republicans who are in support of -- of this, mr. speaker. we have democrats who are passionately and strongly in
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support of it. my very dear friend from new york, mr. meeks, he's going to join us. we've got other colleagues of ours going to join us in a minute. i want to say that this is something that absolutely should be done. now, i talked about the fact that i believe it's a no-brainer but i recognize that there is a lot of political consternation about this because it's russia. and we all know that russia has an absolutely horrendous human rights policy. we know that russia has engaged in trying to expand its sphere to other former republics of the soviet union. we know that there is tremendous corruption and cronyism that exists in russia today and it is not acceptable. it is not acceptable to any of us. now there's some, mr. speaker, who argue that for us to deny the u.s. an opportunity to have
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a vote on pntr, repealing jackson-van eck and allowing us to proceed with thiwould be a good thing and send a message to russia. when in fact the exact opposite is the case. there's nothing that we could do as the united states of america that would be a great boost to supporting the per petchuation of the aberrant behavior we have seen from russia than for us to deny a vote on permanent normal trade relations that would see us, then, have access to that market. i said that last year we exported $11 billion of goods and services to russia. if we could pass pntr here, projections are that by 2017 we would double that from $11 billion to $22 billion. now what does that mean? it means more good u.s. jobs.
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. it means an expansion of our american values. it means again, this force compliance with the rules-based trading system. it means creating a structure that will allow us to undermine the kind of political repression that exists in russia. now, our sticking our head in the sand would be just plan wrong. now, those are just not my words, mr. speaker. on the 12 of march, received a letter from some of the most prominent and outspoken human rights active its in russia. and they said the following. this is from these very, very prominent diss i had ents and activists, some of whom have been in prison.
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they have had long history of being opposition leaders to vladimir putin. in the letter, they said some politicians in the united states argue that the removal of russia from jackson-vannick would help no one but the current political russian regime. that assumption is flat wrong. although there are problems with democracy and human rights in modern russia, the amendment on the books does not help to solve them. moreover, it limits russia's competitiveness in international markets, leaving russia trapped in its current petro state model of development and preventing it from transforming into a modern, diversified and more high-tech economy. this helps mr. putin and his cronies, they say in this
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letter. at the end of the day, those who defend the argument that the provisions should still apply to russia in order to punish putin only darken russia's political future and hamper its economic development and frustrate its democratic aspirations. mr. speaker, i would like to ask unanimous consent to include this letter from the seven in the record, underscoring how critically important it is for us to take this action so we can boost those who are struggling to improve the plight of those russians who are seeing their human rights jeopardy arized based on the current policies and i ask unanimous consent to include the statement in the record. the speaker pro tempore: no objection. mr. dreier: it's not something that again is all partisan and something that transcends this institutions. we have received a number of
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letters and dig this one up here, we have a bipartisan letter from governors across this country that was sent just weeks ago on the 25 of july and sent to us by governors from alabama, arkansas, california, connecticut, delaware, georgia, iowa, mississippi, north dakota, south carolina, south dakota, utah, vermont and washington. a broad cross-section. democrats and republicans and all of these governors were signatories to this letter saying as governors we know from firsthand experience in our state that expanding opportunities for international trade and attracting foreign investment are essential to promoting u.s. economic growth and creating new and better jobs right here in america. russia's impending membership in the world trade organization offers a significant opportunity to increase our trade and
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development with the world's ninth largest economy. and so i got to say, mr. speaker, you can understand why i see this as a no-brainer. to me, this is a pretty simple thing. but i recognize that some might believe that it's a reward to russia and vladimir putin, and i stand with them, i stand with them for all the reasons they are opposing it, but i argue the reasons that they and i oppose the actions of vladimir putin underscore why we need to ensure that the u.s. is at the table. and so, with the president having stated he has this goal of doubling u.s. exports and consumers there who want to have access to u.s.-manufactured products, to our goods and services, we need to get it done. and since i see a number of my colleagues here, i recognize my good friend from new york, mr.
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meeks, who has joined us. as i recognize mr. meeks, i would like to say members have come up to me from both sides of the aisle and have indicated that they wanted to be able to talk about this. one of them is our friend from virginia, mr. moran and he handed me some talking points and i ask unanimous consent for them to be included in the record as well. i yield time to my very, very good friend from new york, mr. meeks. the speaker pro tempore: request is covered by general leave. mr. dreier: great. so it's going to be in there. the speaker pro tempore: if the gentleman wishes to ask for it. mr. dreier: i ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days in which to revise and extend their remarks for general leave and any great remarks they would like to include in the record
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and with that, i recognize my colleague, mr. meeks. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. meeks: this is a bipartisan bill that makes common sense, common sense that we get this done. so, as i stand here today, i say to you it is the right thing for america. it is the right thing for businesses in america. and it's the right thing for us to create jobs in america passing this for russia. mr. dreier said, russia is the ninth largest market in the world. and once the united states -- and wants the united states manufactured goods and services and companies are eager to
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supply russia's expanding consumer market. while we wait, the failure of the united states congress to grant permanent normal trade relations with russia have compromised the competitiveness of america's businesses and hindered the increase of exports and stood in the way of growth for united states domestic jobs. on august 22, the russian federation joined the world trade organization concluding nearly 20 years of negotiations and discussions with the united states and about 150 other w.t.o. members. and during these years, wasn't easy, but russia did complete reforms of its businesses and trade practices and of its legal system to conform to the international community and to the w.t.o. rules. these reforms will benefit, not
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hurt, benefit u.s. companies. it puts them in a rules-based system. since august 22, russia has significantly opened its market to more than 150 w.t.o. trading partners, with the sole exception, the sole exception, the united states of america. that means that since august 22, businesses from more than 150 w.t.o.-member countries, with, again, the sole exception of the united states, have conducted trade with russian counterparts protected by the w.t.o. dispute resolution mechanism and while we wait to act, u.s. businesses are at a competitive disadvantage. business analysts say that the
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u.s. exports currently underperform with respect to russia. they predict that pntr -- with pntr, u.s. trade with russia could double over the next five years. now, i'm from new york and i look at what it means for new york, just a small piece. new york would export to russia nearly reach half a billion dollars in 2001, half a billion. that's a big deal. but when you consider the transportation, the shipping, the customs brokers, the airport personnel jobs involved and the potential economic impact is tremendous. clearly, increased trade is good for new york. but it's also good for every state in the united states. and stands to benefit every
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state, every state. i repeat, stands to benefit from the opportunity to sell more goods and services to russia through pntr. so we've got to get it right. let me conclude by saying this. i'm the ranking democrat on europe. and as i go and talk to a number of nations, who used to be part of the ussr, some who still have conflicts with russia, one of the things i want to talk to them, what do you think? are you happy to be in the w.t.o.? they said yes. should we get rid of jackson-vanik and they all said yes that it sends the right message and compels russia to play by the rules. and we then have a referee in which to make sure they do that.
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so i'm hopeful that we can get together and before we leave here, we pass pntr for russia, because every single day that we don't, we're losing out on creating jobs here in america. so i yield back, mr. dreier. i look forward to working with you and hopefully we'll get this done. mr. dreier: i thank my friend for his thoughtful comments and i would just like to underscore this notion of doubling our exports, taking that level from $11 billion in the next five years to $22 billion. will go to the benefit of new york, california, of minnesota, of louisiana, and it will provide benefits all across this country and at the same time, it will help us deal with this
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human rights question, which is such an important one, because i haven't talked about it, but obviously including the legislation that deals with the very tragic death of the law in russia who was raising questions and basically a whistle blower of raising concerns about the behavior of the russian government and left to die in prison. and with this legislation, will be ensuring that those who are responsible are brought to justice and never happens again. and i think all the way around, this can be a win-win for the cause of human rights and the cause of creating jobs right here. and i thank my friend from new york for his thoughtful contribution. and we are pleased to join by my good friend from minnesota and has a grasp of the issue of globalization and how opening up new markets around the world will benefit his constituents
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and i'm happy to yield to my friend. >> let me say, with the bipartisan of this important issue, which i will concur in comments by mr. meeks, i thank the chairman, because we are having these discussions after your many years of leadership about the benefits of trade and selling america. mr. paulsen: and i know that our country is in great debt and we are going to miss your leadership down the road, mr. chairman, in the future. i rise in strong support in passing this permanent normal trade relations status with russia. we must pass this to give american manufacturers, farmers and service providers, a fair chance to compete and sell their goods in the markets of russia. they joined the world trade organization back on august 22
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and open their markets to the rest of the world. there are about 150 countries except the united states that can fully benefit with much better access to the russian marketplace. they can benefit from the commitments, including stronger international property protections, greater transparency, recourse in the w.t.o.'s dispute settlement procedures if russia fails to meet its commitments and the united states cannot claim all of the benefits that come along with russia's interest. so the president's export council, we have heard great statistics that are real, they are real, mr. speaker. they estimate that u.s. exports to russia will double and triple over the next five years if we pass pntr if there are jobs in the united states and jobs in high tech and all across the
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spectrum. and no doubt that russia's force is growing. this is a population that has a rapidly growing middle class. and i will speak about a medical device from minnesota. it's one of the companies that will lose out if we don't pass permanent normal trade relations soon. russia is one of the fastest growing markets and growing in medical devices and technology and key player. since 2005, there have been 10,000 russian health care professionals that have been tried in medtronic technologies. and they have benefited 70,000 patients across russia. russia has agreed to substantial tariff and russian tariffs will average 5% and will give u.s.
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medical technology companies the opportunity to significantly expand into the russian market. meanwhile, pntr meanwhile, russia doesn't need any rules to go into the united states. we'll lose all this if we don't act on pntr with russia soon. pntr with russia is a step toward assuring that we benefit from russia's aseppings and remain competitive in the market today. if we don't, other w.t.o. companies will continue to grab market share, market share that's difficult to grab back. when i think about a competitor, a company like med tronic in minnesota -- like medtronic in minnesota, we want to make sure they continue to grow and prosper and we can sell american across the world. u.s. companies are being left
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behind as our competitors continue to grow in this profitable market of medical devices. losing ground we may never be able to make up. with other countries graining -- gaining this head start, we're losing out. i hope we act next week, mr. speaker, mr. chairman, before we head back before the election season. this is critical for jobs, it's bipartisan, the president can claim great ownership and credit for this as well if we act soon. i will do all i can to continue to work with you, mr. chairman. mr. dreier: i would like to reclaim my time. i thank my friend. i'd like to expand on the medtronic example. we talk about big pictures and numbers and we say we want to create jobs. but the example of medtronic is clearly a specific opportunity. i wonder if my friend has any examples if he's talked to executives of medtronic about
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the benefits of opening up that market in russia. because it's true, you know, we are horrified, horrified at the crony capitalism that exists in russia. we're horrified at the human rights violations that exist. but there are also many very, very good, dedicated, hardworking russian people who would like an opportunity to have access to many of the products made right here in the united states. i know my friend and i traveled around the globe and one of the things that consistently comes forward is people saying, we want to be able to purchase goods from the united states of america. goods manufactured in the united states of america. i wondered if my friend might tell us about the success of med tronic and what has happened and what benefit we would see created for jobs here and also for the consumers in russia. i yield to my friend. mr. pulsen: thank you for yielding back. whether it's a company like a
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medtronic or a company like cargill, which is based in my district as well, clearly there's the opportunity to sell american, knowing that 95% of the world's consumers are outside the united states and this will mean more medical device being sold in russia. these are life-improve, life-saving technologies that there's no doubt in a competitive environment, european companies are trying to access that market, are moving forward to do that and a world class leader like a medtronic is going to be stepping -- is going to have a vacuum unless it's able to move forward. unless congress acts to give permanent normal trade relations. mr. dreier: my friend is right. i want to express appreciation to his commitment to our trade working group which has, oen a wide range of issues, been table focus on creating jobs for millions of americans as we sought to recognize the benefits of exports and imports as well around he's been very
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dedicated to his constituents. i appreciate your dedication this evening too. i'm also pleased to see that we're joined by my good friend from louisiana, a hardworking member of the house ways and means committee, someone who understands the world extraordinarily well and i'd like to recognize my friend, mr. bus tawny. mr. boustany: thank you, chairman dreier. thank you for your tremendous service to our country in our capacity as a member of congress, as chairman of the rules committee. i want to thank you for your leadership on international trade and propoeting america's role in international trade. i also want to thank you for your friendship and your wise counsel. i have enjoyed the time. mr. dreier: we've still got months to go. mr. boustany: we do, but i'll miss having you here and i look forward to keeping in touch in the future. mr. dreier: absolutely.
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mr. boustany: thank you for organizing this round of speeches tonight to talk thbt -- about this crucial piece of legislation we need to pass. what it will do, it ensures a level playing field for u.s. workers, u.s. formers, employers, who are competing for business in russia. now we all know that until russia came into the united states it was a difficult police station to get access for businesses. not just large company bus small and mid size firms. i believe it's vital for taos grant russia permanent normalized trade relations by removing them if the jackson-van eck provisions. with if we don't approve their pntr, russia could deny the united states some of the concessions they've made to join the w.t.o. and we wouldn't be able to challenge that
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through the w.t.o.'s dispute resolution system. this is critically important especially if we talk about small and mid sized firms in manufacturing that want to export. they need that kind of rules based system to work with them. otherwise they don't have the recourse to fight protracted bat unless a difficult market like russia. of course it's with some trepidation that we undertake this. we know that u.s.-russian relationship, the relationship between our two countries is ten eweous. we know very well about russia's human rights abuses. we know about the respect for the rule of law, we have heard extensive stories about the corruption. yet the retail is russia has now become a full-fledged member of the world trade organization. and if we're -- to avoid putting the u.s. at a disadvantage, we need to move forward and grant permanent normalized trade relations. i'll say this, the best thing we can do ss a -- as a country
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from a foreign policy standpoint with our relationship with russia is to move forward with normalizing trade relations with russia because if you want to see political reforms in russia, if you want to clean up the corruption, you want to see rule of law flourish in russia, our commercial relationship with russia is critical because it will help build a strong, vibrant middle class in russia. which will help bring about political reforms there and help overall in the world of security. but at the same time, it's a win-win because this grants the united states businesses, farmers, access to a market which will help create good-paying, high-paying jobs in the united states. pntr will also make permanent the trade status the united states has extended to russia on an annual basis for more than a decade. we're not doing anything new, just permanently granting this
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that all our other trading partners enjoy. this is not anything new or special for russia. it's far more important for the united states, for you are manufacturers, our service providersing our agricultural interests who are seeking open access to the russian market. in an attempt to continue a level playing field for international trade, the w.t.o. requires members to extend normal trade relations to all other w.t.o. members on a -- an individual basis unless they don't want to apply. after 18 years of negotiations, russia became a member of the w.t.o. on august 22 of this year. currently the united states has a condition placed on russia, baits back to the 1970's, when the soviet union had restrictive immigration policies preventing jews from leaving its territory. congress passed the jackson-vanek amendment to the trade act of 1974.
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since 1992, the united states has certified annually that russia complies with the jackson-vanek provisions. we have conferred normal trade relations on an annual basis to russia. only by granl waiting russia from the jackson-vanek amendment, making trade relations permanent, will the u.s. be in full complipes with its w.t.o. obligations, enabling u.s. businesses and farmers to enjoy all the trade concessions and commitments that russia had made in order to join. mr. dreier: i want to underscore the point my friend has made. we know that jackson-vanek was -- the intentions bheend it were good. we saw horrendous policies from the soviet union. a wide range of areas. virtually everything they did was bad as the soviet yube. totalitarian country. but the denial of opportunities for jews to immigrate, especially going back to israel
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is what led to that amendment. i'd like to ask my friend to repeat again, he said that we had complete clines, we've been able to certify, for exactly two long decades. 1992. 20 years ago. 1992 to 2012. for 20 years we have had annual certification because there's been an opportunity in russia, since, thank god, the soviet union came down, with the work of so many people, but we saw it come down and we now have seen really what you would call a cold war era provision that's been left in place for two decades. why in the world would we still have this? it seems to me it's the right thing for us to do to ensure that we sweep this aside so that we can move ahead with these market opening opportunities. i assume that's what the gentleman -- the point the quelt is making.
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mr. paulsen: that's correct. this is a cold war -- mr. boustany: the gentleman is correct. we now need to move forward. the world has changed. as we look to move forward with expanding market access for our farmers, our piss, especially small and mid sized firms it's critical we grant permanent mormalized trade relations if we're going to maintain u.s. competitiveness globally. a cupry like china, for instance, has consummated well over 100 trade agreements just in the last couple of years. we have done three and it took us five years since the bush administration to put in place three relatively small trade agreements. we need to take advantage of the structure and with russia coming on board, the ninth largest economy, we have a huge opportunity to promote american
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competitiveness, american business interests, at no cost to us. staying out of this hurts us. that's why we need to move forward. if we don't act to grant pntr to russia, our nation's dedicated work force, our determined business community will be left at a competitive disadvantage vis-a-vis our foreign competitors. given the slow growth of our economy and the continued high unemployment rate, we can't allow this to happen. with europe struggling, this is an important market to help with global growth, helping global growth by helping the u.s. growth. jobs in the united states. it's because of this reality, i was, you know, co-sponsor of the vital legislation to lift -- to grant pntr to russia. the place -- to place additional reporting requirements on russia and the u.s. administration. these conditions ensure that russia implements its w.t.o. obligations and those
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obligations are enforced. some will raise the question, we had a problem when they came on the w.t.o. and we're still struggling with that. we have learned from that process. we have additional safeguards in this agreement that will help make sure that russia fully maintains its obligations under permanent -- mr. dreier: reclaiming my time to underscore this point. the notion of the w.t.o., an entity that stems from an agreement that the post-war leaders put together in 1947 called the general agreement on tariffs an trade, the idea behind it was to diminish tariff and nontariff barriers. when we saw in the early 1990's the w.t.o. put into place, the idea is to see ideas like intellectual property violations which we know are rampant around the world, in russia, here in the united states as well, we see lots of
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retaliatory action that is taken and with the structure of the w.t.o., there is pressure to live with a rules-bationed trading system to deal with these kinds of corrupt practices that go on with great regularity, and i'm happy to yield to my friend. mr. boustany: if we're going to work through these agreaments and eliminate the corruption, the abuses, intellectual property theft, we have to make the rules-based system work and the w.t.o. framework which grew out of the yen agreement on tariffs and trade in the 19409s is that mechanism and it works. that's what allows us to make a claim against china if they're doing abusive practices. it is an equalizer. it basically puts in place a framework that ensures that trade is conducted fair and openly and that's what u.s. workers, that's what u.s. farmers are looking for. it's also very important as a critical piece to maintaining
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global security. if we focus on international economics, commercial relationships through open navigation of the seas, open trade, we're going to see less conflict in the borled -- world. i think this is critical from a security standpoint, it's critical from a stand point of economic prosperity for the united states. and as the united states continues to face economic challenges, our exports have replained relatively strong. probablies that kept us out of a recession over the last couple of quarters. mr. dreier: i think the gentleman makes a very important point about what i like to refer to as the economics of liberalization. looking at the fact that we know people in this country are hurting. wull we all have constituents who are having a difficult time keeping a roof over their head, food on their table, people who have lost their jobs, their homes. it's been very, very tough. we know that again creating markets for these workers is very, very important. so seeing the standard of living
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improve creates new markets for us and it leads to political liberalization because as we see the many people in russia who are suffering have opportunities to improve their quality of life and their standard of living by buying u.s. goods and services, seems to me that that's going to lead towards greater pressure for political reform. to address these human rights problems. to address the crony capitalism that exists to. address the kind of outrageous behavior that we see with great regulator from vladimir putin and i'm happy to further yield. mr. boustany: i agree with that. any of these things that will help promote the development of a middle class in these other countries, where it be china or russia in this particular case, creates a new consumer class for american goods. now, we're all patriotic. we want to buy american. i love to go to the store and i'll buy something and the label says made in america and i feel good. i feel good about it. most americans do. but by god, i want to rush -- i want a russian mother to buy something on a shelf that says made in america.
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we need to sell america. sell american goods overseas. that's where 95% of the world's consumers are and our economy has been too much mired in domestic consumption at the expense of not looking into the outside world to export american-made goods to these consumers who live outside the united states. and by normalizing our trade relationship with russia, we will create the mechanism to do that with russia. this will increase critical sales of american goods and services to russia. goods and services. and not only that, we will create very good high-paying jobs here in the united states. this is definitely a win-win situation. now, we spoke about russia being the ninth largest world economy, importing more than $400 billion in goods and services. and as some of my colleagues may be aware, louisiana, my state, it's a small state, but it's seventh among the 50 states in total exports because of our location on the gulf of mexico and our waterways and our ports.
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in the first quarter of 2012 louisiana farmers and small businesses exported nearly $14.25 billion in goods and services to the rest of the world. in fact, the 2011 louisiana exported $135 million worth of goods to russia. which created a lot of good jobs in louisiana. louisiana was a top supplier of p.v.c. plastics to russia in 2011, with $21.4 million in ects ports. but exporters in the e.u. and in china still accounted for more than 60% of russian imports of that particular material. so, we have an opportunity to grow this if we grant this kind of permanent normalized trade -- mr. dreier: if i might reclaim my time. just to underscore again, p.v.c. is that material that's used like in the sprinklers and i see this p.v.c. material, i've been very familiar with it for years. so what my friend is saying is
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that there's an opportunity for exports to exceed the $24 million coming from louisiana to russia, but right now we're seeing other parts of the world transcend that and by virtue of the fact that they have access to that consumer market in russia, it's denying the people of louisiana from being able to see an increase in the level of exports, of p.v.c. material, into russia. mr. boustany: that's exactly right. our louisiana producers of the p.v.c. plastic are looking for opportunities to get into that market, yet they're being superseded by countries in europe and china. in fact, when russia -- when they joined the w.t.o., they agreed to reduce their ask ranch tariffs on plastic products. so if we don't do this we're going to be subject to higher tariffs, putting us at a major competitive disadvantage. and our foreign competitors will take advantage of this.
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and again we'll have the mechanisms in place if we do grant trade relations to have a dispute mechanism in place to ensure that russia keeps its commitments to our workers, our businesses back here at home. now, there's no reason not to move forward with this. and i hope that we can see some action on this relatively soon because as each day ticks by we are losing competitiveness and one last tidbit of information, louisiana doesn't have large fortune 500 companies. we have a couple. but we have a lot of small and midsized firms that are manufacturers. and we're a leader in manufacturing on the small scale in the energy sector. with equipment and services that are vital to energy production. energy security globally. and these companies would love to get into the russian market, to have the right protections of law so that they could sell their goods and services. this would lead to a lot of
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economic activity in louisiana, it would help create good-paying jobs once again, help promote our energy sector and development in manufacturing and the energy sector of which louisiana and the united states frankly has been a leader. so congress must continue to support these kinds of agreements to boost our economy here at home, to create job opportunities, good-paying job opportunities right here at home, that's why it's so important to move forward on this. i will yield back to my friend. mr. dreier: mr. speaker, let me express my appreciation for the very thoughtful remarks. the dedication that my friend has shown to his louisiana constituents and the american people is really very, very -- it's very, very respected in this institution and i want him to know how much, mr. speaker, i do appreciate his understanding of what it's going to take to create more jobs in louisiana for the people there who are struggling and working so hard.
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the one issue that i wanted to mention, i talked about it earlier, but i think is very important and it's really what's led to people who are in opposition to this. and that is this question of human rights. and we have horror story after horror story. i have stood in this well and several times talked about the relationship that i developed with a man who is currently in prison in russia. and this man's name is mikhail, he was in an energy business. he was one of the most successful and dedicated and hardworking russians. he was one of the greatest philanthropists in russia, giving huge sums of money to support many, many charitable causes. but, mr. speaker, he was guilty of one thing and one thing only. he was not a supporter of vladimir putin's. and he sat in my office in the rules committee, right upstairs here, and, having visited him in
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moscow and then having him visit me here in the capitol, he said that, he said that he was nervous and he was concerned that he was going to face some consequences for his opposition of vladimir putin. and today i'm embarrassed to say how i reacted. i laughed. and said, the soviet union no longer exists. we have moved to a country that is independent, free, strong, vibrant, moving away from corruption, and you, i said, you are in fact one of the most successful people in the country. there's no way that you would face that kind of threat. well, mr. speaker, tragically we saw him jailed for seven years and then we saw an extension,
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another seven-year extension of his sentence and i will tell you that that is one of the reasons, because of the dedication that i have to the name of mikhail, who at this moment is suffering in a prison in russia, it is for that reason that i want us to take every step that we can to ensure that we bring about the kind of reform and the change that is essential. what we've done in this legislation, mr. speaker, is we have dealt with a specific case where a man died, serg aye was -- serge was relatively young. he was looking younger in his 30's, lawyer, who raised questions and concerns about the behavior of vladimir putin's russia. and for that he was sentenced to prison, he was beaten, tortured
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and left to die and that has raised concern here in the united states and around the world. that kind of action is not acceptable and we have to do everything that we can to ensure that those who are responsible are brought to justice and that it never, ever happens again. mr. speaker, i'm happy to say that in this legislation we have the so-called bill which was reported unanimously out of our foreign affairs committee, the measure has passed the senate. we need to see the melding of these, we need to see this put together and passed so that we can say the thank we're going to expand our american values, creating jobs in the united states by opening up this market, and at the same time saying we will ensure that whoever is responsible for this kind of outrageous behavior is brought to justice. we're seeing obviously horrendous human rights
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violations take place around the globe. yesterday morning i was -- i stood here to talk about our great, great ambassador, an amazing, an amazing foreign service officer who represents the united states in damascus and jerusalem and other spots in the world and his dedicated career and tragically chris stevens was killed as we all know. we are seeing a very, very dangerous world and that's why it's important for us to stand up and take action and that's exactly what this measure, calling for the u.s. to be at the table with russia by granting, and so again my friend has said it perfectly. and mr. paulsen said it, mr. meeks said it, my colleague, i know in his talking points that i submitted for the record, mr. moran would have said it, mr. brady very much wanted to be part of our presentation this evening and he passionately
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believes that this is the way for us to most effectively deal with the very, very serious problems that we have on economic growth and on human rights violations. and so i hope, i hope that we will be able to see passage as soon as possible and again i know that this is the time of year as i said at the very outset, just weeks before the election, to be very partisan. but this is something that we can have a bipartisan victory on. and that's why, mr. speaker, i'd like to implore president obama to get engaged on it this. i know there are many issues, again, looking at north africa and the middle east, i know he's campaigning in his quest to be re-elected. but this is something that democrats and republicans in the house will pass with strong support if he will get engaged and work with us, work with us to ensure that we can bring this together and so i hope very much
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that he will do that in the coming days and weeks, to underscore his goal in creating jobs. i'd like to further yield to my friend. mr. boustany: i thank the chairman for yielding some time back to me. i share a sentiment about the situation with human rights and liberty. america's always been the beacon of liberty, individual liberty, and it's also been the hope of the world with regard to human rights. the american public has to understand that one of the most important tools we have as a nation is our economic strength and it comes from each and every one of us in this country, from a plummer to a mechanic, or someone engaged in small manufacturing, our farmers. that economic strength comes from each and every one of us, it wells up into the mighty country we have. we think about american might in terms of military might. yes, it's a great and wonderful
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thing but our economic strength is even more porn. the way we use that to influence events in the world, to promote liberty, to promote human rights, is to engage in trade. the surest way to help promote changes in russia for the better is to help that middle class by engaging in trade, that middle class will be stronger, it will be wealthier, it will want to engage and this will lead to serious political reforms. the last thing i want to say to the esteemed chairman is this. i share your sentiments with regard to ambassador stevens. they was a -- he was a wonderful man, he served his country in many tough spots, difficult places. he was fearless. i will also say that we oftentimes talk about our military men and women and put them up on the pedestal, where we should rightly do so. but we forget to talk about our diplomats, our foreign service who do the same sorts of things, putting themselves in
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harm's way in tough places around the world. they are -- world. they do their duty around the and make us all proud. we lost a great patriot. mr. dreier: i thank my friend for his thoughtful contribution on that. as we talk about human rights violations and the threat that exists to lovers of freedom around the world, i will say that a cup of hours ago, i talked to a friend of mine who is libyan. his father was this elead opposition for four decades to gaddafi in libya. he was in tears. in our conversation. saying that the people of libya owe everything to the united states of america. he said benghazi would have been completely lost were it not for the crites of america and what it is that we did to bring about the kind of liberation they so desperately needed having been repressed for 42 years under gaddafi.
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he went on to say that as we look at libya, it's important to note that the tragic murder of ambassador stevens did not come from the people of libya, it came from individuals. a few individuals. he said the people of libya love the american people. and revere the american people. you know, i suspect that as we're talking about russian pntr, that the same thing exists in russia. because they're living with great oppression. they're living with what is little more than an authoritarian dictatorship with the crony capitalism and violations of human rights we're seeing but mr. speaker, the people of russia and i know many russians, we all do, they have great respect and love for us as well. so again, our goal is to bring to an end repressive policies
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and use, as my friend so eloquently said, the economic strength of the united states that is exemplified in every american who is working in whatever capacity at all to see our economy grow because that is, we're the only complete superpower left in the world today. the only complete superpower. by virtue of that, i mean militarily, economically and geopolitically. we have to step up to the plate and continue to exercise that strong leadership role and passage of permanent normal trade relations, taking this step will go a long way toward doing just that. mr. speaker, i thank all of miff friends who participated and i know as i said, asked for yen leave, others who wanted to be here and weren't able to, will be submitting statements for the record. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. under the speaker's announced policy of january 5, 2011, the gentleman from minnesota, mr.
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ellison, is recognized for 60 minutes as the designee of the minority leader. the gentleman is recognized for 60 minutes. the house will stand at ease. mr. ellison: mr. speaker, my name is keith ellison, i'm co-chair of the progressive
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caucus. tonight i come before the people on the floor of the house of representatives to discuss important issues facing our economy and the huge challenges that our nation is facing, particularly with regard to the events that are going to take shape right after the election. the progressive caucus has come together, mr. speaker, and fought very -- thought very carefully about what a deal would look like and should look like. i want to talk about that tonight. i want to go into what we call the deal for all and to elaborate on some of the complexities that our -- that are facing our country and how this is a time when we really need to focus on the real core of what's important to make sure that as all these fiscal matters come together, that the united states and the people of america, particularly the working people, come out on top and in the right space. before i dive into that, mr.
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speaker, i do want to yield just for a moment to talk about the great service of ambassador chris stevens. ambassador stevens was a dedicated public servant and he and the vims who lost their lives in again -- and the individuals who lost their lives in ben gahn see recently have to be remembered for the dedicated service -- in benghazi recently have to be remembered for their dedicated service. it's important to note that chris stevens loved libya, loved libyans, and it's not any accident that libyans took to the streets, not to attack america but really libyans came to the streets to hold up plaque cards -- pla cards to apologize for the acts of these extremists who assaulted the
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embassy in benghazi. many held up placards extoling the great virtues of chris stevens. it's important to point out that as americans are watching these things unfold across the mideast, that the last thing chris stevens would want would be for taos withdraw our pull out of libya. it was this horrible incident that occurred in benghazi was not done by the libyan people. it was done by terrorists who have nothing but contempt for the democracy in libya which is unfolding and that is why they would take their action against the consulate as they did do. there were about seven libyans who died, the numbers are yet coming in. and of course they're subject to being revised. but there were a number of libyans who lost their lives trying to defend that consulate. i think that americans should keep that in mind.
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also should keep in mind that as these -- the outbreak of these protests across the mideast, you have one in yemen, in egypt, in libya, it's important to point out that leaders of the countries have apologized for these things, particularly yemen, libya, and eventually egypt got there. it's important to point out that americans should know that this is not representative of certainly the will of the libyan people and there are a lot of people across the region who support the united states and support a good relationship with the united states. we should not allow ourselves to be confused by these events. i can easily see how people could be, but when you see dedicated public servants risking their lives to build cridge -- build bridges, the last thing we want to do is withdraw and abandon these relationships that have been
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fought for and now paid for in the blood of our heroes, ambassador chris stevens being one of them. is i -- so i do want to wrap up this section of my discussion tonight and just point out, chris stevens' dedicated servant of the united states, dedicated, committed man who has gone and offered the ultimate sacrifice on behalf of his couldn't troy build bridges between people, particularly to help build democracy in a weak state of libya, a state that throughout the -- threw off a dick kator. chris stevens went there to help the people and to help them build a democracy and he must ever be remembered for his great sacrifice and also that of the individuals who lost their lives with him. four americans and several
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libyans. as the names come forward and as their names are released, we'll come back to this microphone and share the information with the people. so now, let's talk about the business we're here to talk about, mr. speaker. tonight we're talking about the progressive caucus message, the congressional progressive caucus is the organization in congress dedicated to talking about what's good for the average working american. making sure that the average american's interests is looked out and regarded highly as we move forward. i want to talk a little bit about the budget for all and the -- not only the budget for all but also the deal for all. i want to just go right to the point and point out, mr. speaker, that in this deal for all, we -- the progressive caucus is proposing, we're
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clear there are a few things. we talk about the fiscal cliff, the sequestration cuts are going to come into effect. these are significant cuts both in the military and nonmilitary domestic discretionary spending. this will be devastating to important programs like transportation, like health care, like research, like education. that put significant cuts in thesimportant programs, laying off a lot of people, perhaps even exacerbating our already too high unemployment rate. but not only that, we see that the bush tax cuts will expire, the payroll tax will expire, the so-called doc fix will expire a.m.t. will expire. there's a number of things coming together and many people who watch the news know that after this election, we're going to see a significant amount of activity around how we, members of congress, will be able to pull our fiscal situation back together in a
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way that hopefully avoids big cuts to important programs, hopefully avoids great pain that working class people might suffer if we don't come together and come up with some deal. and you've heard a lot of discussion about a grand bargain but if we do any deal, any deal, the core values of the deal, we need to stay first up and upfront, what this deal must include. the first thing this deal must include, and i'll start with this poster here, mr. speaker, is protection for america's social safety net. let me start with a quote from president roosevelt, when he says every man, woman, and child is a partner. and in 2012, these words come to life when we see the more
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than -- that more than 58 million people rely on medicaid. that's a lot of people. 48 million rely on medicare. more than 61 million rely on social security. so with the idea in mind that everybody is included, everybody counts, everybody is contemplated in our american life, it's important to point out that as we move forward with this deal for all, or any deal that we might have, that it's important to maintain the social safety net, particularly in very difficult economic times if you slice medicaid, medicare, social security, you are going to literally be harming the interest in millions and millions of americans. therefore, key feature of any deal, any deal, is the preservation of benefits for the people who need them most,
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medicare, medicaid, social security. mr. speaker, the next slide, the next poster here is a poster that talks about how we need to move our nation's military toward a -- the ability to deal with 21st century threats. that will mean that we need to do some changes, some adjustments, and cold war era weapons systems are just not what this particular moment calls for. so the second feature of the deal for all will be that the military, which has seen its budget literally double since 2001, will have to share and to some pearing down but not just pearing down but literally -- paring down, but literally advancing some of these cold
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war weapons are not necessary, they're expensive, cost a lot of money and don't help us meet the threats we are facing right now. the second feature of the deal for all would be moving our military to a position where it's dealing with 21st century threats, not simply maintaining old, expensive programs that we don't really need. the third feature of the deal for all would be that we ask americans who have been well to do americans, people who have benefited tremendously under the bush tax cuts, to do a little more. now, i know my friends in the republican caucus and some conservatives often say that taxes, why would you want to punish somebody for being successful? well, we think that america has done so much for so many that to help pay a little bit more to this country that you love is not a punishment. in fact, it's actually something that we would expect people to
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do. and there's a lot of very well to do people who agree with that point of view. we actually have a piece of an idea called a buffett rule because a very rich man says that, hey, a rich man like warren buffett should not be paying a lower tax rate than his secretary. which he does. and so americans of various economic classes agree taxes are not a punishment, they are the cost and the -- they are the cost of funding in a civilized society. and if we're going to meet the budget challenges facing our nation we're going to have to get some revenue and it might welcome from the people who have benefited so much under the bush era tax cuts. and then finally but perhaps most importantly, mr. speaker, most importantly we need to get americans to work. this is a key feature of what
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any deal for all must include. so tonight we're talking about the deal for all and we're talking about the fiscal cliff and we're talking about what any fair agreement would have to include. and this is not bargaining chipping, mr. speaker. these -- all four of these things are key in order to have a safe, sound budget fix or a grand bargain. we're going to have to have something to get americans back to work and we're talking about a infrastructure bank, a longer-term transportation bill various things i'm going to talk about tonight. but putting americans back to work, asking them to share in the cuts and revamp our military for a 21st century role, three, asking the top 2% to pay a little bit more by allowing the
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bush era tax cuts to expire for the top echelon, it would only mean that the top rates would go from 35% to 39.5%. and then finally we're going to protect social security, medicare and medicaid because these programs are essential and vital, particularly in times where people are truly having tough economic times. and so that's where we start. the conversation tonight. focused on dealing with a proper resolution to these huge budget fights that we are about to have because so many important features of our fiscal reality are coming to expiration on december 31. so i want to say that we have -- this deal that i think that we should have, we should work on, mr. speaker, and this budget for all this deal for all as well,
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it's something that i think we can reach, we should reach, the american people need to us try to work toward a solution, this is why the progressive caucus has come together and said this is what we should do. we should have a deal, the deal would be comprehensive, a deal that could help us avoid the harsh realities of sequestration, that could avoid the complete expiration of all the bush tax cuts or the extension of all the bush tax cuts, a deal that will help us do the things we need to do. we do need some kind of agreement but the agreement has to have some key benchmarks. i've laid them out to you. i just repeat, ask the richest to help pay -- to pay the fate for america, ask the military to share in the cuts, good, safe, sound cuts that will help position us for the 21st century are available. we need to make sure that we
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protect those who benefit from social security, medicare, medicaid. and most importantly we need to grow the economy by investing in jobs. but we have had some difficulty getting together. and i'm not surprised colleagues on the other side of the aisle, on the republican side of the aisle have been, mr. speaker, slow to try to come together and work out the deals that we need. but we do extend our hand, hopefully be able to come together and work out these problems. because the american people depend upon us to do that. but i do want to say that we have seen some real challenges over the course of the year, just in terms of getting things done. so i think this is a time, this is a time when we really need to come together and focus on what's needed, but in order to be fair, mr. speaker, i think
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the people should know what the real serious challenges we've been facing are. i just want to make note right now that we have had a congress where obstruction has been the norm. it doesn't have to stay that way and i urge colleagues on all sides of the aisles to work together. but i'll never forget being in this chamber just about a year ago, a little more than a year ago, when because obstructionism we could not come together and ended up -- the republican caucus refused to vote to raise the debt ceiling, something that had been done literally dozens of times both under democrats and republicans, but they refused to do it and refused to do it and this resulted in this political rain chore resulted in the downgrade of america's bond rating. this was a tragic moment that happened a year ago. but it marks the obstruction that we've seen. hopefully this kind of obstruction are will not be what
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we see going forward. but i think it's important that much of the obstruction that we've began to see had to do with the budgetary position that we saw starting from the congress, from the very beginning. the bottom line is that we started with the idea that we could only have massive cuts and no revenue. massive cuts and no revenue. our colleagues even continue to this day to talk about how terrible the economy continues to be but their only prescription for fixing it is to take, as president obama said, two tax cuts for the wealthiest americans and call us in the morning. that's funny but it's sadly true as well. tax cuts seems to be their only prescription for all problems facing the american economy. and we started out this congress with the budget being laid out,
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it was talked about as the ryan budget, but really with the republican budget. he may have been the author of it but they all voted for it, embraresed it. but this budget, where we started out, massive cuts, didn't balance for a long, long time, the budget never really added up. and it still doesn't. and so in order to get to a deal or some kind of grand bargen to deal with our fiscal challenges that are coming right up soon, we need a new spirit of cooperation and it cannot be based on the budget that was offered by paul ryan and backed by the republican congress. like i said, it didn't add up. the fact is that businesses, my republican friends think that businesses always want a tax cut. i owned a small business myself. i was a lawyer, i had a law firm. i had staff that i had to pay. i had machines i had to purchase.
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i are rent that i had to pay. i had a payroll i had to make and what i needed was clients coming through the door so that would justify me adding and hiring more people. but just tax cuts alone was not what small business people need what they really need is greater demand which is what we're not addressing if we don't deal with the key feature in the deal for all which is to invest in jobs. if people can't buy, mr. speaker, then stores can't sell and if stores can't sell they can't hire. and if they can't hire people can't buy. and this is the heart of the problem. slack demand, high unemployment, people who do have jobs, nervous about making purchases, and this is the heart of the problem and what we've got to address. you know, misunderstanding these simple ideas about the importance of the american consumer having enough where with all to buy things that they need is really part of the heart of this problem that we're in right now.
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this idea of thinking that, oh, yeah, just a tax cut will solve the problem, or, oh, yeah and get rid of all the health and safety regulations, too, these two things can never bring america prosperity. but making sure that americans are working and optimistic about their economic future will absolutely help this economy and it's what we've got to do and i think through the deal for all any bargain we come to will put us on the right footing as long as we keep those key features in place. so here's the thing. we've got to get to the point where we're working together and the key to that is to scrap this budget, this ryan budget, and this -- the republicans have acopt -- adopted. we have to scrap that idea that we can't raise any taxes, that raising taxes are bad, that taxes are wrong and that taxes are always a problem and that they're a punishment. we've got to scrap that idea. we know better than that.
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so many of our colleagues even signed pledges that they wouldn't raise taxes and this of course has been a problem, the only pledge i say around here is the pledge of allegiance. but the fact is that we got to scrap this idea so when we face this real serious fiscal cliff some people are calling that we are able to negotiate and this means letting go of some of our long-held attachments, starting with the so-called ryan republican budget and these pledges, these no-tax pledges. if we were able to do that, we could solve our problems. and again it's not all tax raising, there's going to be cuts, too. we have some ideas about where we can cut in a way that makes our country stronger. but they will have to be a mick mixture of both of these things. and so i just want to talk a little bit about the ryan budget and talk about the ryan republican budget and just to help dramatize what some of the
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key problems there are with it and why it's not workable and why we need to reject it as we move into this fiscal -- this time when we're going to have to deal with this fiscal cliff as has been named. one of the key features of why it's not going to work, why it's wrong, is that it ends the medicare guarantee. it replaces it with vouchers. some people around here like to talk about obamacare, while i far prefer obamacare to vouchercare and it makes it dangerously more expensive for seniors and the disabled. we don't want to put seniors in a more precarious financial situation which is what the ryan vouchercare idea would do. the ryan budget adopted by the republicans would also cut medicaid funding by 34%. it cuts away tens of millions of needy people in -- and turns the program into an underfunded block grant program.
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this is a sad way to treat some of our most vulnerable citizens and you should know, mr. speaker, that medicaid actually impacts seniors too because so much of the money that funds nursing home care is from medicaid. so it's not just medicare, medicaid cuts 34% would be very harmful. the ryan budget also cuts transportation by 25%. now transportation is a job creator. transportation puts americans to work. building roads, bridges, transit , helping people get from here and there, i can imagine high-speed rail cars. i'm from minnesota, i'd love to see us have a high-speed train from duluth to minneapolis to chicago. it would be a great thing. it would put lots of people back to work and it would improve productivity. it would allow people after it's built to get from here to there fast sore they can to

U.S. House of Representatives
CSPAN September 13, 2012 5:00pm-8:00pm EDT

News News/Business. Live coverage of House proceedings.

TOPIC FREQUENCY Russia 103, Us 37, United States 34, U.s. 30, America 23, Mr. Dreier 19, Libya 14, Mr. Van Hollen 9, New York 8, Mr. Meeks 8, Chris Stevens 8, Medtronic 7, Minnesota 7, California 7, Mr. Garrett 6, Madam 5, Washington 5, Maryland 5, Egypt 4, Mr. Barber 3
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